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The Florida Senate

CS/HB 9 — Community Redevelopment Agencies

by State Affairs Committee and Rep. LaMarca (CS/CS/SB 1054 by Appropriations Committee; Community Affairs Committee; and Senator Lee)

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Community Affairs Committee (CA)

The Community Redevelopment Act authorizes a county or municipality to create a community redevelopment agency (CRA) as a means of redeveloping slums and blighted areas. CRAs are controlled by a governing board that either is composed of members of the local governing body creating the CRA or commissioners appointed by the local governing body. CRAs operate under a community redevelopment plan that is approved by the local governing body and are primarily funded by tax increment financing, calculated based on the increase of property values inside the boundaries of the CRA.

CS/HB 9 increases accountability and transparency for CRAs by:

  • Requiring the commissioners of a CRA to undergo four hours of ethics training annually;
  • Requiring a CRA to use the same procurement and purchasing processes as the county or municipality that created it;
  • Expanding the annual reporting requirements for CRAs to include audit information and performance data and requiring the information and data to be published on the agency website;
  • Providing that beginning October 1, 2019, moneys in the CRA redevelopment trust fund may only be expended pursuant to an annual budget adopted by the board of commissioners for the CRA and only for those purposes specified in current law, including overhead and administrative costs;
  • Requiring a CRA created by a municipality to provide its proposed budget, and any amendments to the budget, to the board of county commissioners for the county in which the CRA is located 10 days after the adoption of such budget; and
  • Requiring a county or municipality that created a CRA to include the CRA’s audit report with its submission of the county or municipality’s annual financial report to the Department of Financial Services.

The bill also provides a process for the Department of Economic Opportunity to declare a CRA inactive if it has no revenue, expenditures, or debt for six consecutive fiscal years, and provides for the termination of existing CRAs at the earlier of the expiration date stated in the CRA’s charter as of October 1, 2019, or on September 30, 2039. The governing board of the creating local government entity may prevent the termination of a CRA by a majority vote. Finally, the bill authorizes any local governing body that created a CRA to adjust the level of tax increment financing available to the CRA. The local governing body may set the level of funding at any amount between 50 percent and 95 percent of the increment.  

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect October 1, 2019.

Vote: Senate 36-1; House 81-30